Costa Rica economy
Costa Rica’s trade balance has always been negative and it appears that it will remain so in the near future. Costa Rica is heavily influenced by the primary sector, i.e. agriculture. In the meantime, however, the tertiary sector, services, has also grown in importance. Above all, this is thanks to tourism, as the country has continuously increased visitor numbers. Around 1.9 million visitors from all over the world came to Costa Rica in 2009. Ecotourism deserves a special mention here, it plays a very important role.
The high-tech sector, which is now the second most important source of foreign exchange, was also expanded. The industry now has a share of 26 percent, and services have risen to more than 60 percent. Agriculture contributes less and less to the gross national product.
Most industrial companies can be found around the central plateau of Costa Rica, around the capital San José. On the Caribbean coast, banana cultivation is traditionally still to be found on the plantations. Recently, however, the bananas have also been grown on the coast of the Pacific. It is no wonder that the areas for banana cultivation are constantly being expanded, as Costa Rica is the second-largest exporter of this fruit. Around 2.7 million tons are produced here every year, and the trend is even increasing. But that only affects production, with which Costa Rica only lands in seventh place.
The pineapple is also an important export good, more and more areas have been opened up for cultivation in recent decades and around 27,000 people now work in pineapple cultivation. However, the health conditions in which they operate are more than poor. Coffee is also an important export, it is primarily grown in the Central Valley. Macadamia nuts, melons, and papaya are also grown in Costa Rica and exported from here. Even ornamental plants come from here and are exported all over the world.